Pasquale Foglia v. Mariella Novello (Foglia II)

E.C.J. Case 244/80, 1981 E.C.R. 3045 (1981)

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Pasquale Foglia v. Mariella Novello (Foglia II)

European Court of Justice
E.C.J. Case 244/80, 1981 E.C.R. 3045 (1981)

Facts

Pasquale Foglia (plaintiff) was an Italian wine dealer who sold wine to Mariella Novello (defendant). The wine was delivered to France by transport company Danzas. Foglia entered into a contract with Novello that plainly stated that Novello would not be liable for any duties that the French or Italian governments chose to impose in violation of European Union (EU) law. Foglia entered a similar contract with Danzas providing that Foglia would not be liable for any duties that violated EU law. When the wine was delivered, the French authorities imposed a consumption tax. Danzas paid the tax without complaint but billed Foglia for it, despite the contract between the parties. Foglia reimbursed Danzas and then contacted Novello, demanding repayment. Novello refused, and Foglia brought suit against her in Italy to recover the costs. The Italian court requested a preliminary ruling from the European Court of Justice (ECJ) regarding whether the French consumption tax violated EU law. The ECJ found that it lacked jurisdiction to assess the question, as it was not ripe; none of the parties had sought to challenge the French law and had instead merely sought to recoup their costs through each other and the Italian court. The Italian court submitted an additional question to the ECJ regarding the division of power between the ECJ and national courts with respect to preliminary rulings.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning ()

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